Frontier delays fleet carriers again but promises long-term improvements

As disappointing as it may sound, it looks like commanders across the galaxy will have to wait yet again on the only major feature of 2019…

A new post was published on the official forums by Will Flanagan, community manager at Frontier, stating that due to various complains raised by players regarding a buggy September update – they will be focusing more on core features and testing from now on.

This ultimately means that fleet carriers (that were initially postponed back in August 2018) are once again being pushed back and are now planned for release somewhere in Q2 of 2020.

Not everything is bleak and gloomy though… As everyone can agree, Elite is in dire need of fixing and improving the “small” things before simply abandoning them and moving onto the next half-baked feature. As Will goes on explaining, Frontier is planning on a series of these updates every three to four months with a public beta for each of them before launch.

When it comes to any info on the actual new content – It looks like there will be no announcements at least until summer 2020, just after fleet carriers get pushed onto live servers.

You can read the full post below.

Greetings Commanders,

Following the launch of the September Update last month, we’d like to provide you all with an update on our plans for Elite Dangerous.

Firstly, thank you for all of your feedback on the September Update, which you've shared with us on the forums, across social media, on livestreams and through the Issue Tracker. There is no doubt that, in addition to the new features, the September Update introduced a number of issues and bugs which caused a lot of frustration. We are really sorry for these issues. We realise that some of the issues had an impact on your ability to enjoy Elite Dangerous. The team have been working hard to address the most critical issues and have already released a series of patches and updates to bring those fixes in as quickly as possible.

However, we know there's more to be done. You've asked for more focus on existing bug/fixes and issues, and for the community to be better integrated into the development process and testing for these upcoming updates.

In order to improve your overall experience, we have decided to refocus our efforts on addressing key issues and bugs. Since the launch of the September Update, we've been taking a deeper look at our internal development roadmap, the way in which we utilise public betas, and the content of our next updates.

Here is a summary of our plans:

  • From now and into next year (2020), the updates will focus almost exclusively on addressing recent and longstanding issues, including those reported in the Issue Tracker, ultimately making the game better.
  • We are expecting to have a series of these updates, which will be rolled out (approximately) every three to four months.
  • Each update will also include a public beta that will run prior to the update's release, with a dedicated time to address major issues that appear.
  • The first of these updates will have its public beta in December, with an expectation that the launch will be early in 2020.

As a result of our updated plans, we have made the difficult decision to defer the release of Fleet Carriers. We are now planning for Fleet Carriers to be released in an update in the second quarter of 2020, rather than in December 2019 as previously stated. This will grant us additional time to refine the feature as well as focusing time on addressing existing reported issues. It will also ensure the state of the game is in a better position to introduce Fleet Carriers, that will provide Commanders even more opportunities to interact with the Milky Way. We understand that this delay will be disappointing for some players, but do know that this decision is one that we do not take lightly, and is made with the best interests of the community and game at heart.

Ultimately, we are confident that this will improve the Elite Dangerous experience for all our players.

The team have been hard at work on the next major milestone, which you may remember we mentioned back in March as our next major paid addition to the game. They’re making fantastic progress and on schedule for release by the end of next year. We are very excited to show you what we’ve been working on. However, we can only announce the content when it’s at the right stage of development, we estimate this will be ready to talk about at some time in summer 2020, after the Fleet Carriers update. We appreciate there is a bit of a wait, but we want to make sure it is ready to be shown before making our full official announcement to the world.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your ongoing and continued support and for helping give us the feedback, steer and insight to make decisions that will benefit the entire community and for your continued passion and dedication.

Will Flanagan

Community Manager